Sunday, July 10, 2011


I admit it. I sometimes take pleasure in the bad behavior of other peoples' kids. :-) Because sometimes I get to thinking that I am the only one whose kids talk back, sass, forget their place, throw tantrums... and it's all because I am a horrible parent.

Recently I had some reassurance that maybe I'm okay. We had a boy (he's 15) at our house spending the day between church services and we'll call him "M". I have liked this kid since I met him two yeras ago. He loves God and has a very tender heart- as evidenced by his frequent prayer requests at church for himself and his attitude and his relationship with God. He's a very likeable kid from a very likeable family. In 7th grade when he was "going out" with Sarah, he asked his mom if it was okay for them to hold hands. I like a kid who clears his romantic adventures with his mother.

Anyway... to look at this family, you would think they are just the perfect little family with these three very well-behaved boys. "M" is the youngest.

I was working on a puzzle in the dining room when I heard M on the phone with someone and M didn't sound happy... he was nearly yelling. At first I figured he was talking to a friend or one of his brothers from the tone of his voice. This is what I heard, more or less:

"Yeah, but you are saying things about me that make it sound like I am a horrible person."
"NO! I DIDN'T!!!!"
"I was NOT trying to go over your head!"
"That is not what I said!"
"It's just not fair... "

Then a pause....
And a quieter, more polite...

"Yes sir."
"Yes sir."
"Yes sir."

Another pause....

"Okay. Fine."

Then Sarah says, "Did you hang up on your dad?!!"
M says, "Yes, I just hate him"
Sarah says, "M!!! Your dad is nice!"

Then M's phone rings. {Uh oh!}

M: "Hello?"
"Yes sir."
"I'm sorry."
"I didn't hang up. I said good-bye"
"Well, you might not have heard it, but I did say it"

{I didn't hear it, either, but that's beside the point}

"Yes sir."
"I'm sorry".

It amazes me that M would act like this with his dad. But, it made me feel oh so good

Of course, in the car later, M was saying "My dad said I need to respect him, but, he doesn't respect me". There's always a "but" with us humans, huh?

So I said, "You know, M, God holds you responsible for YOUR behavior regardless of what another person does or deserves, including your parents". (Sound wise, don't I?)

M looked down, "Yes ma'am"

Two minutes later from M, "My dad is just so blah blah blah" (more disrespect)

And I turned to look at him with a smile and said, "M, what did I just say?"

M smiled and looked down, "Yes ma'am". :-)

I still love M. I still approve of my girls having him as a friend. I still hope one of them will marry him one day. But I mostly just feel like maybe I'm an okay parent after all.


Anonymous said...

hahahhahahahahahahahaha i laughed throughout this whoollee thingg